* Erdogan has said will "wipe out" Twitter
* US calls ban anti-democratic
* DNS numbers, used to get round ban, no longer working
By Daren Butler
ISTANBUL, March 22 Turks faced fresh
difficulties in accessing the Internet on Saturday after the
government blocked access to Twitter, the site where
tweets on a corruption scandal have angered Prime Minister
Twitter was blocked late on Thursday, hours after Erdogan
vowed to "wipe out" the social media service. Leading
international condemnation, the White House said the Twitter ban
undermined democracy and free speech.
Turks attempting to access Twitter have found an Internet
page carrying court rulings saying that a "protection measure"
has been taken, blocking the site.
But many have been able to get around the ban, either by
using virtual private network (VPN) software or changing their
Domain Name System (DNS) setting, effectively disguising their
computers' geographical whereabouts.
By Saturday, though, computers that had been set with DNS
numbers widely circulated to help people get around the ban were
not able to access the Internet at all.
"Apparently alternate DNS servers are also blocked in
Turkey. New settings are being circulated," wrote one Twitter
There was no immediate official comment.
Erdogan, who is campaigning for his party in local elections
on March 30, did not talk about the Twitter block at rallies on
Friday. He was due to continue campaigning on Saturday in the
southern province of Hatay and in the capital Ankara.
Industry Minister Fikri Isik said on Friday talks with
Twitter were taking place and the ban would be lifted if the San
Francisco-based firm appointed a representative in Turkey and
agreed to block specific content when requested by Turkish
The company said in a subsequent tweet: "We stand with our
users in Turkey who rely on Twitter as a vital communications
platform. We hope to have full access returned soon."
A company spokesman declined to say whether it would appoint
someone in Turkey but said it was moving forward in talks with
(Editing by Robin Pomeroy)